Page 24 - Walter Dugas Revisited: Oxen & Wood
ISSUE : Issue 67
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1994/8/1
Walter Dugas: Oxen & Wood CONTINUED FROM INSIDE FRONT COVER Walter Dugas: She's (Mrs. Dugas) cleaned that (stove) just as clean as the day it was bought. (Then ve saw the photo of Walter with an ox.) When I was hauling sand and rocks for people making concrete wall, with an ox, and my cart. I had three cows one time. I had 9 heads of cattle one time. That's when I had to quit with hay fever, see, and then I took asthma. That's me there, too. I look much bigger than I am--that's after my operation, my lung operation. (I thought that oxen were used long ago.) Oh, gee whiz, I had an ox since then. I wish I had a picture of it. He used to haul one cord of wood every load. Was some strong. Walter on top of the biggest woodpile he ever had. "You see the roof of the house • that was the whole house before it burned. It was two stories high. And that was the fence there down below. That's how high the woodpile was." (Did a lot of people have ox here?) Oh, quite a few, yeah. I trained every ox I had, myself. Right easy to train. Right easy to train. (Were oxen dangerous?) No. That same ox you see there, I'll tell you what happened to me one time. That same one there, eh? I was going to a place they call Grand Lake--it's about three miles from here. And I was going for my second load. And I was scared I was going to be late, before dark--I had cows to milk. And I was on a bobsled. I had a pair of bob? sleigh. And I had a kind of a platform from one bobsleigh to the other. And I was TVust in our stars! **** [ORTH STAR INNl NORTH SYDNEY capebreton Nova Scotia's Friendly Seaport • Gateway to Newfoundland Travellers to Cape Breton "Unpack Once" Centrally Located to Most Attractions • 75 Rooms - Kings, Standards, • Fishery Restaurant and Suites • St. Pierre Rum Bar • Luxury Suite - Jacuzzi Bath • Indoor Pool and Whirlpool • Harbour View - Air conditioned • Kids free with parents • Seniors Discount Overlooking the Newfoundland Ferry Terminal (Exit 21, Highway 105) Tel: (902) 794-8581 Fax: (902) 794-4628 39 Forrest Street, P.O. Box 157, North Sydney, N.S. B2A3M3 1-800-561-8585 (Atiantic) right in front. And all of a sudden, I went to hold onto a rope I had from one stake to another. See, what the stake was is to hold the wood. I went to grab the (rope)--where you go to hold on. And I had a little piece of wood, with a little piece of line that's about the size of this cord here. And what I did.... I went to just give him a little whip with the wire--not the wire--it was a kind of a rope. Went to hit him. And he took off. And when he took off, I lost my balance. And I fell. And his hind foot--and he was shod with steel shoes. You had to have steel shoes on an ox, to haul on the ice, eh? (Otherwise,) they wouldn't have been able to haul. And I said, "Get up!" And I just hit. When I said. "Get up," he took off. And when I lost my balance I said, "Whoa!" When I said the word, he just drove his two front feet in the snow like this, and he stopped dead on. And I fell between his two shoes, headfirst--and he never gave me a scratch. That tells you how you can tame an animal. That animal was something, to take that. I wouldn't like to do that with every ox, but I did it with that one. I fell headfirst between his two shoes. He could have kicked me right in the face, blow my face off. (We think of oxen as big and strong. Were 7 Union St. • GLACE BAY • 842-1522 (next to Savoy Theatre) Hand Crafts • Rugs • Wreaths • Wall Hangings ??' ' Battenburg Laces • Seagull Pewter ' Designer Fragrance Candles Duvet Covers • Crib Ensembles Children's Mobiles • Books Exquisite Collectables Antique Reproductions
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